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The Modern Mall

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The shopping centres are increasingly focusing on not only good design but more importantly the customer experience. Kulbhushan Talwar, General Manager at Shipra Mall,a venture of Shipra Group, talks about striking the perfect balance between design innovation and practical retail considerations.

Primary factors defining the development of a shopping center

Site location, scale and size are the crucial factors defining the development of a successful mall.The site for shopping malls should be selected on the basis of parameters such as accessibility, transport connectivity by car, public transport and service vehicles. The lack of these affects not only customer foot falls but also the competent delivery of goods and services to the stores located in the mall. Traffic situation before and after the mall should also be considered.

The retail market is growing even withe-commerce coming in a big way, as the pleasure of physical shopping against online has a completely different satisfaction,Tier-II cities are bringing the mall in smaller formats. In metros, the international brands with competitive price points will be able to sustain the e-commerce competition. Presently,the entertainment and dining out facilities are becoming catch factors in malls.

Factors like size and configuration of the site, is necessary to achieve mass catering to the catchment area. In the case of mixed-use developments, the various segments should complement each other and work together. Topography and shape of the site, with supporting infrastructure plays an integral part in defining the development of a shopping center. The study of the catchment, its demographics and consumption patterns are vital, as it is sales and consumption that will bring in the rentals.

How critical is it to get the correct retail tenant mix for a shopping center?

The marketing and financial success of a shopping centre depends on many factors. Among the mainsuccess factors, perhaps the mostimportant one is the tenant mix.The term “tenant mix” refers to an amalgamation of factors, including the proportion of space or number of units occupied by different retail/service types. It is widely recognized that the tenant mix of a shopping centre is highly critical for all the stakeholders concerned like consumers, promoters as well the retailers.

For luxury and mid-segment retail mall, a good mix is always better. Theprice point of products plays an importantrole in creating a major difference.The success rate of these malls usually depends on factors like design and layout, the mall’s brand positioning,location and how well they cater to the needs of their target segments. Also,whether or not they have been able to evolve into family destinations rather than just remaining shopping centres

Latest mall management trends

New concepts and trends will obviously create an impact for each and every consumer. So flexibility in the design of the space, layout, and materials is vital to make the retail space more vibrant by providing more leisure activity. If a mall is to be a place for physical visits, it has to create a firm social connection via interactive means that compel consumer to physically be apart of the process. It will be the service that will make a huge difference along with the unique retail concepts.

Parking is another position where it’s important to shave time off shopping trips. Implement a parking system where when shoppers first arrive, they can easily witness how many spaces are accessible on each garage level. Escalators should be supplementary to parking garages.

Mall management also encompasses operations, facilities management,security, accounts, common area maintenance, marketing, leasing and other remote ancillary functions related to a mall. All these are important because they decide the bottom line(cost). Retail Mall need to manage the complete services, as hotels do with better efficiency and utilization of manpower, equipment and supplies. It is essential to keep in mind the image one wants to craft in the customer’s mind.


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